State lands must be utilised in provision of social and affordable housing - Imelda Munster TD
Sinn Féin TD for Louth and East Meath Imelda Munster has today called on the government to step up to their responsibilities and ensure that state land is used to provide social and affordable housing.
This week three reports on residential construction costs were published by the Department of Housing, comparing construction costs in Ireland with comparable countries in Europe, the impact of new construction guidelines for apartments as well as other issues such as land costs and how state lands could be used to deliver housing.
Deputy Munster said:
“These reports confirm what we already know. The market cannot deliver genuinely affordable housing, and state owned land must be used to deliver homes.
“The Department’s report, ‘Review of Delivery Costs and Viability for Affordable Residential Development’ recognises that the cost of land is a major problem, and that state land should be better utilised for residential developments.
“Sinn Féin has been making this point for years.
“In Louth alone there are 53 acres of council-owned land banks which have been sitting idle for years, while the housing crisis rages.
"I have asked the Housing Minister on numerous occasions to ensure that funding is released to the council to get moving on a social and affordable building programme, but nothing has happened.
“This crisis affects every part of the housing sector, from people who have been made homeless, families that have been on housing lists for many years, people who are paying extortionate rent and those who feel that they will never be in a position to buy a home due to the escalation of house prices.
“Affordable and social housing needs to be delivered on state lands by local authorities; not by public private partnerships or private developers who are only interested in profit."